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Attested since the 1640s; air +‎ borne


airborne (not comparable)

  1. In or carried by the air.
    Airborne pollen can aggravate allergies.
    • 2012 December 1, “An internet of airborne things”, in The Economist[1], volume 405, number 8813, page 3 (Technology Quarterly):
      A farmer could place an order for a new tractor part by text message and pay for it by mobile money-transfer. A supplier many miles away would then take the part to the local matternet station for airborne dispatch via drone.
  2. In flight.
    • 1984, Steve Harris, "Aces High", Iron Maiden, Powerslave.
      There goes the siren that warns of the air raid / Then comes the sound of the guns sending flak / Out for the scramble we've got to get airborne / Got to get up for the coming attack.
  3. fitted to an aircraft; e.g. airborne radar.
  4. transported by air in an aircraft; e.g. airborne troops.



airborne (plural airbornes or airborne)

English Wikipedia has an article on:
  1. Military infantry intended to be transported by air and delivered to the battlefield by parachute or helicopter.


  • airborne” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2019.